FORGIVING LOVEPsalm 32
“ Then I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not hide my iniquity; I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,’ and you forgave the guilt of my sin. (Psalm 32:5)
The psalms are a beautiful collection of prayerful songs that reveal the faithfulness, strength, love and power of God. This particular psalm is often referred to as one of the penitential psalms. It conveys the amazing grace of God that covers our sins through solemn prayer, earnest confession and true forgiveness.
Confession towards discernment of self: Confession is more than a personal or public proclamation of one’s sins. It is an inner expression and realization of one’s imperfectness before a perfect God. In Psalm 32:5, the word for confess in Hebrew is ‘yada’, which basically means “to know” or “to make known”. Thus, true confession is an enlightenment experience that enables one to mature and more fully achieve God’s intended purpose. This may even be observed in the prophetic call of Isaiah (Is.6) and the call to discipleship of Simon Peter (St. Luke. 5), which was preceded by humble confession. In this passage, the psalmist acknowledges his sin before God and proudly proclaims, “I did not hide my iniquity”. Although, it is obvious that nothing is hid from God (Hebrews 4:13; Ps. 69:5) this statement indicates he falsely envisaged an element of concealment that kept him from comprehending his utter transparency before God. Thus, confession for the psalmist is a profound awareness of himself and his weaknesses before the Almighty God
Forgiveness, towards the restoration of relationships: This Psalm is also a testament to the power of forgiveness. Forgiveness is an expression of the heart that moves one to different action. It transcends the simple instinct to retaliate and ushers forth love and kindness in its stead. Although, sin may cause us to “hide from God” the experience of confession and forgiveness restores us to a more beautiful fellowship where we may “hide in God” (v.7). Thus, forgiveness allows one to enter into a deeper relationship with God. True forgiveness removes the hindrances that blocks relationships from developing and growing. Therefore, forgiveness is a divine establishment that prompts relationship of humanity to each other and to God. This is evidenced through Jesus Christ on the Cross, as the Lamb of God sacrificed for all humanity, prays “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do” (St. Luke 23:34) as the point of a mended, restored and renewed relationship between God and creation. The Psalmist David in this passage testifies how divine forgiveness empowered him to experience God’s restoration, guidance, direction and instruction (8-10) in his life. Let us then throw aside every sin that hinders and through confession and forgiveness restore our relationship to God and humanity.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Almighty God, strengthen me to fall before you in confession and approach your throne of grace restored and renewed. Amen.
Rev. Jaisen A Thomas, Virginia